|Billy Adams & The New Rock-A-Teers Rock in Green Bay|
Nashville Rockabilly legend Billy Adams and his new Rock-A-Teers band rocked the crowd at the "Rockin' 50's Fest" at the Oneida Casino, in Green Bay, Wisconsin, on July 11, 2002. Adams was featured at the week-long "Rockin' 50's Fest," along with the largest grouping of rockabilly superstars ever gathered for one single event, including The Crickets, Janis Martin, Big Al Downing, Dale Hawkins, Sonny Burgess and The Comets, among many other talents. In all, over a hundred acts graced the stages at the Oneida Casino for this once-in-a-lifetime "Super Bowl" of rockabilly music.
Four days into the event, Billy Adams had a group of eager fans from around the world waiting when he stepped on stage at the 3 Clans Stage Ballroom, and he did not disappoint them. Adams opened the set with a Chuck Berryish styled mover, called "Rockabilly, Rock It," then he segued into some of his classic rockabilly hits from the 50's, including "That's My Baby," "You Gotta Have A Duck Tail," and "True Love Will Come Your Way," pausing only momentarily when he broke a string on his guitar (since he had originally learned to beat out rhythms on a lard bucket lid, he does tend to punish his guitar strings!). Taking this opportunity, Adams introduced his friend, fellow rocker Larry Donn, who joined the band on piano for a spirited version of Bill Haley's "Shake, Rattle and Roll." Adams then dipped deep into his recorded history and dusted of his 1960 Nau-Voo Records doo-wop inspired ballad, "Blue Eyed Ella," and capped the mid-set with his own version of the rollicking "Matchbox," taking full advantage of Larry Donn's keyboard savvy.
The happy crowd was pleased, when the opening strains of Rock-A-Teer Dave Moore's guitar heralded the arrival of one of the most requested songs in Adams' repertoire, the thunderous "You Heard Me Knocking," from his first nationally distributed single on Dot Records, in 1958. When the song finished, and the clapping subsided, Adams recalled to the gathered mass the dreams of a 15 year-old boy from Appalachia that were realized when he recorded his first ever song in 1955, the now-classic, and much sought-after Quincy Records single, "Rock, Pretty Mama." The fans pressed forward to take in the elixir of the song that has become Adams' calling card around the world, the song that was birthed near the dawn of the advent of rock 'n' roll, the same song that many in the crowd had heard on dozens of compilations released around the world for years=E2=80=A6.and now it was delivered in the flesh, by the man now far removed from that scared young boy, with a voice that has only grown stronger with age. When the song ended, the fans cheered, and with great fanfare, the Rock-A-Teers vamped as Adams waved to the audience and left the stage.
Not satisfied, the audience wanted more. Mouse, the M.C., invited Adams and the Rock-A-Teers back for an encore. Adams and band came back and closed the show with his own musical re-telling of the history of rockabilly in "Rockabilly Special," which he had recorded in 1998, at the legendary Sun Studio, in Memphis, Tennessee. After the performance, fans from over 15 countries crowded to Billy Adams' autograph line to greet their idol. He was particularly taken by one young Japanese fan who spoke very rapidly in his native tongue, ending excitedly with the only words that both men had understood: "Beelly Adams!!! Rock, Pretty Mama!!!" That said it all.
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